I don’t know where Kakashi comes with these elaborate strategies on-the-fly, but I do love the little super-deformed drawings outlining his game plan. Seeing as it involved only a select group of ninjas and him as the primary source of offense, I was left wondering if everyone else’s orders were simply, “Try not to die.” Against the Seven Swordsmen of the Hidden Mist with Suigetsu giving us the lowdown on each of their swords, all these nameless ninja are nothing but fodder for them to showcase how powerful they are. As such, the sensible side of me thinks they should have all been ordered to retreat in an attempt to minimize casualties, whereas the analytic side of me realizes they served their purpose in the story by dying on the battlefield. That is, assuming their purpose was to spread fear and panic, and to firmly cement the fact that numbers mean absolutely nothing in this war. Instead, name and status are everything when it comes to judging which side has the upper hand, so the scales are tipped heavily in favor of Zabuzu and Suigetsu’s older brother Mangetsu’s side as far as I’m concerned.

At the moment, it seems Guy has been rendered fairly useless in the face of their “Silent Killing” technique, which is a bit disappointing, since I already pictured him closing his eyes and beating everyone down with sound alone like in those old Chinese kung fu movies. With him effectively out of the picture, it looks like the focus has shifted to the battle within the battle, namely Kakashi’s attempt to take out Zabuza and disperse his Hidden Mist technique so that they can actually fight back. While I get the feeling that Zabuza’s not the only Swordsman capable of using the “Kirigakure no Jutsu”, that’s the direction things appear to be headed. However, as if to belittle the plan that was so nicely laid out, the cliffhanger they left on quickly threw a wrench into it, thanks to Kabuto taking us on a trip down memory lane by having Haku sacrifice himself to protect Zabuza again. The déjà vu-type shock from it subsided fairly quickly for me, because I figure it wouldn’t have mattered if his Raikiri landed or not when they’re both immortal, so most of the cliffhanger came from Haku holding onto Kakashi’s arm so that Zabuza could finish him off.

Quite honestly, I’m at a bit of a loss on possible ways he’s going to get out of that, short of the one that involves someone jumping in to save him. Compared to the earlier battle against Deidara and Sasori, Kakashi’s division looks like they’re going to need some help against this many high-profile ninjas. Mifune’s group should be the closest with Gaara’s not too far behind, so it’ll be interesting to see if any new faces join the fray to level the playing field.

30 Comments

  1. Well, if Kakashi ordered everyone else to retreat, then he would be alone up against seven deadly assassins, not to mention his two supporters will be completely vulnerable. The fodder ninja are serving their purpose as distraction.

    MasterDragonKnight
      1. But in a world of ninjas wouldn’t those who run away during a war be considered a traitor. I feel that many would rather die in battle than to runaway and be called a coward.

        Otaku_Brawler
  2. I’m calling “Zabuza and Haku both snap out of it…again”. I mean, the scene is virtually identical to what happened way back when, so they’d both probably catch on at the last second.

    Either that, or Gai runs in and blocks the sword with a kick.

    Vsin
    1. Well they couldn’t make it the only sword without a special ability so I guess considering the circumstances it was a good one to pull out.

      With this chapter they also made the lightning swords that originally appeared in the Raiga filler arc canon. Not sure though if they were canon all along or Kishi made it that way after after they appeared in that arc.

      Gekokujou
  3. I don’t think the solution will be that simple. Kishimoto made it very clear that his war is one of strategy and strength. He didn’t have kakashi lay out a BRILLANT ninja plan just to have it dashed in the same chapter.

    In the same way we’re finally seeing the most out of some of the most enigmatic badasses, were also seeing the most out of our most enigmatic good guys.

    I suspect a normal low key ninja will get his time to shine. Sakura, Lee, or possibly someone else.

    Tikal
  4. wow i don’t know how they going to win, especially when Kakashi is having trouble with only zabuza. That brother seems like he’s a itachi level character or pain, hes like the strongest out of the group, I’m thinking maybe 2-4 swordmans get kill or seal actually and he then using several of the dead swords at one time but who knows.

    anime09
  5. I’m really looking forward to more action from Suigetsu’s brother. Master of all seven swords? The guy must be deadly.

    Some background on how he died would be great too, since someone that strong meeting an early death is intriguing to me.

  6. it would be badass if suigetsu gets a hold of all the swords. he’s surely to “wet himself” if he finds out that the swords he’s been searching popped out in the battlefield.

    ichigoat
    1. That doesn’t actually solve anything. Zabuza can just regenerate the parts of him that are warped away. Warping all of Zabuza away would take too much chakra. Sending him to another ‘dimension’ where he can further wreak havoc is just burying the problem anyway.

      You-tachi
  7. I’m also betting that it’ll end with the Zabuza having a lame realization of deja vu, and thanks Kakashi before dying.

    But I’m really hoping it doesn’t play out like that. It would be much easier for me if I didn’t favor the bad guys winning over the good guys. I at least hope tha the good guys lose some non-grunts during this battle since I’m still gyped about Pein’s magic show.

    treizer
    1. I agree this war is boring because no characters that can influence the plot is here: Naruto nor Sasuke, not even Madara himself who I consider to be the main characters are nowhere near the battle or the center of conflict. In other words this arc has as much influence as a filler arc which can only be changed when the main chars themselves enter the battle.

      semtex
    2. Good point. As long as there are no clash between Naruto and Sasuke/Madara even Kabutomaru = No plot advancement. And really, I really hate when Sasgay comes out with his new hax without even training for it. Seriously. Well he might be training, but come on show it.

      0927123
  8. Fighting has become too complicated. But it also goes to show that the author has been giving a lot of thoughts to the consequences of the rules (namely, ninjutsu as constructed by his worldview) that he laid out. He is a true sci-fi writer.

    Matroid

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